there was music playing

a couple of tents down from ours

teenagers acting out adult roles

laughing   shoving each other off the path

tossing dishwater

shrieking    giggling

two boys two girls

through at times it seemed like more

too many frisky colts to count

that’s what some old guy called them

damn frisky colts he said

thought we’d have a few quiet days

I wasn’t a teen yet

and couldn’t wait to be what they were

couldn’t wait to get a little

what ever than was

watching them move long the beach arm-in-arm

lounging on the sun-hot rocks

I would tag along

but was quick to rush off if noticed

shy and dying to stay up late

to sit by their campfire as they sang

banging on cans  rattling forks on cups

entwined and snuggled together

I couldn’t wait to be frisky

to run with these easy-limbed colts

I thought they were so old

not as old as my folks

but not kids like me

their bodies nearly adult

girls developing giggling breasts

the guys joking in the change room

about having to shave

slapping at each other with towels

I glanced in afraid to look

wanting to see more than I could

catching glimpses of wet cocks

mushrooms in thickets of dark hair

what the girls they horsed around with had

didn’t interest me as much

I would never grow hooters

but would possess one of those hoses

even the slang they used teased me on

to want to see more

to know more

to handle and fondle

as I drifted to sleep in our smelly tent

I wondered

when would I ever be old enough


This month I’m looking back to the pieces of mine that were published in the first Renaissance Conspiracy anthology in 2004. Camping is one many memory pieces. I set out to write things about growing up queer that were full of longing, innocence and tenderness. Too often those memories are undercut with a sense of fear, bullying, sexual abuse and anger. Not that I didn’t experience some of those as well but enough had been written about them and I eventually addressed this issues in my own way in later poems.


shattered door

There is a lot of truth in this piece – summers my Dad would take us to Ingonish for a week or two to camp out in the provincial camp grounds. There were several of them along the Cabot Trail. The camp grounds had communal showers/washrooms and cook houses.

Many evenings there would be bunches of strangers sharing the cook houses, some with guitars and sing-a-longs were frequent. Michael Rowed the Boat Ashore, The Unicorn, Foxy Lady (just joking about that last one). I did get a little smitten by some of the older teens. But as the poem says they may have been older.


door down

These memories span several summers. The summer of the ‘damn frisky colts’ was one of them; ‘get a little’ was another year. The glimpses of wet bodies was yet another year. I’m not even sure if ‘hooters’ was a word I heard in that summer context but it was more likely ‘boobs’ or ‘tits’ but I wanted word that had youthful braggado as opposed to salacious experience behind it.

It took a couple of versions before I added ‘cocks’ – at first it read ‘wet mushrooms’ – as much as I liked the sprout-iness of that image it was also me pulling back from being more direct – because even then I was thinking ‘cock’ not mushroom. As an out performing poet I was gaining in confidence & caring less if being direct might offend people.


broken dreams

Talking about this piece today I realize that I still fall asleep wanting to handle and fondle more but now before I am too old to enjoy it 🙂


June 21-26 – attending – Rosemary Aubert’s Workshop: The Novelist’s Selfie – Loyalist – Belleville

( I’ve registered already 🙂 & giving two presentations)


register now while there is room at the table

page 23 for details next page down for registration info

June 26, Friday, 10:00 pm – feature – Pride 2015 Erotic Cabaret – Glad Day Bookstore, 598a Yonge St., Toronto


June 27, Saturday – 7:00-  Feature: Hot Summer Nights at Hirut, Hirut Restaurant, 2050 Danforth Ave., Toronto


September 3-6 – attending – Fan Expo


( I’ve registered already 🙂 )

October 18, Sunday – feature: Cabaret Noir: Inner Child Sacrifice


Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr


red bulge

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